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A Tree Falls at Litwalton

A Tree Falls at Litwalton

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Published by Craig M Kilby
The story of a house and grounds now known as Falling Oaks that became the nucleus of a once-thriving community in Lancaster County, Virginia. History of the community and its commerce on the water of oyster and crab industries on the Rappahannock River, canning and shipping. Originally published in the *Northern Neck of Virginia Historical Magazine*, Vol. 58 (2008).
The story of a house and grounds now known as Falling Oaks that became the nucleus of a once-thriving community in Lancaster County, Virginia. History of the community and its commerce on the water of oyster and crab industries on the Rappahannock River, canning and shipping. Originally published in the *Northern Neck of Virginia Historical Magazine*, Vol. 58 (2008).

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Craig M Kilby on Aug 14, 2010
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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08/24/2010

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ATREEFALLSINLITWALTON
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FallingOaksat2160RiverRoadasitlookstoday.Itwasbuiltin1870.byThomasDorseyFicklin,a.CivilU7tzrveterana'!ldnativeofRichmondCounty.ItiscurrentlyownedbyLarryE:Brewer,whocoineditscurrentname.Th'ehOusefacesMoratticoRoad.October2004photo,courtesyofPeggy
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](jlby.
Inhabitantsof,andfrequentvisitorstothenorthwestsectionofLancasterCountywillhavenotroubleidentifyingthisstatelyandseeminglytranquiloldhomeatthecomerofRiverandMoratticoroads,adjacent.totheLancasterCountyMooseLodge.Itsmanicuredlawnandgardensbeliethelesser-knownfactthatthispropertywasthecenterofaoncethriving,bustlingandoftentimesnotoriouscommercialcrossroadsstillknowngenericallyasLitwalton.
.
Today,theonlyremainingnon-agriculturalenterprisesinLitwaltonareBunny'sGarage,theMooseLodge,andaprivatelandingstrip.Here,then,isitsstory.
*
CraigKilbyisanativeofSt.CharlesCounty,Missouri.HeholdsaB.S.degreeinPublic
.
AdministrationfromtheUniversityofMissouri-Columbia.HeservedthreetermsintheMissouriHouseofRepresentatives.WhilelivingintheSt.Louisarea,hewasarealestateappraiserandacommercialrealestatebroker.HemovedtotheNorthernNeckin1995,whereheisactivelyengagedinprofessionalgenealogy,historicalresearchandrealestate.'HeisavolunteerattheMaryBallWashingtonMuseumandLibrary,amemberoftheRichardHenryLeeChapteroftheSonsoftheAmericanRevolutionandcurrentlyservesontheNorthernNeckofV1l'giniaHistoricalSocietyPublicationsCommittee.
 
7036
NorthernNeckofVirginiaHistoricalMagazine
THEMITCHELLS(ANTE-1781TO1869)
Definiteownershipofthistractofland,priorto1781,bytheMitchellfam-ilycannotbeascertained,butitwasintheMitchellfamilyatthattime.The1781willofRichardMitchellleftallthelandinLancasterCountywhereonhelivedtohisnephew,anotherRichardMitchell.Theheirtothelanddiedin1818,leavingittohisson,WilliamB.Mitchell,withwhomthisarticlebegins.ThewillsandlandtaxrecordsprovethatthesubjectlandwasasmallpartofRidgefieldFarm.1Thesmallparcel,nowknownasFallingOaks,owesitsexistencetothewillofWilliamBallMitchell,written"atRidgefieldthis25thdayofJanuary1843andwhollywritten&subscribedwith[his]ownhands."2AfterleavingeachofhisfivesonsenormoustractsoflandbetweenMorattico,Nuttsville,DeepCreekandtheRichmondCountyline(includingEppingForest),thesixthitemofhiswillcarvesoutasmallportionofhisRidgefieldfarm,andreads:IgivetoallmysonshereinnamedjoindyandequallytheLitwaltonEstab-lishmentthatistosaythelotandthelotsbeingbetweentheoldandnewroadsandthelandsdevisedto[sons]Richard,JuliusandLiwetonwithitsvariousbuildingsviz:storehouse,grocery,mechanic'sshop,smalldwellings,gardens,etc.[emphasisadded]ThefivesurvivingsonsofWilliamB.MitchellandhiswifeMargaretDown-man,asnamedinhiswillandBible,were.RichardBallMitchell(1816-1873),RobertJosephMitchell(1817-1888),WilliamLaurenceGunyonMitchell(1821-1897),LittletonDOWnmanMitchell(1821-1897)andJuliusWIlmothMitchell(1824-1859).3Fromthiswill,wecanreadilyseethatWilliamBallMitchellalreadyhad
.
establishedacommercialoperationonthiscomer,andthatinhisviewitwas
afamilyoperation.In1841,hebecamepostmasterofLitwalton,whichisthefirstreferencetotheplacename.Atpresent,wedonotknowthesourceofthename.4
1.LancasterCounty,VirginiaWillBook20,209(willofRichardMitchell);LancasterCountyWillBook28,183(1818willofRichardMitchell);andLancasterCountyWillBook29,26(willofWilliamB.Mitchell).TheemigrantancestorofthisfamilywasRobertMitChell,whodiedinLancasterCountyin1704.2.LancasterCountyWillBook29,26.3.MitchellFamilyBible,transcript,FamilyResearchCenter,MaryBallWashingtonMuseumandLibrary,Lancaster,VA(MBWM).Asixthsondiedininfancy.ItisbeyondtheparametersofthisarticletopresentagenealogyoftheMitchellFamily,whowerecloselyalliedwiththeDowmnans,Balls,Sydnorsandotherleadingfamiliesofthatera.4.MaryR.Miller,
PlaceNameso/theNorthernNeck
(Richmond:VirginiaStateLibrary,1983),88.Also,seeChristineJones'unpublishedmanuscript,"VirginiaPostmasterAppointments,"FamilyResearchCenter,MBWM;andCol.OtisK.Sadler,"PostOfficesinLancasterCounty,"
NorthernNecko/VirginiaHistoricalMagazine
(1952).Theoft-toldlegendthatLitwaltonwasnamedfortWosonsofoneFairfaxMitchell-LittletonandWalter-isnotsupportedbyanyhistoricalevidence.TherewasaFairfaxMitchell,buthewaspartoftheRichmondCountyfamily(sonofWtlliamBladenMitChell).ThestoryoriginatedwithMissLouiseLewisina1982interviewwhenshewas89yearsold.(~.-.'

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